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Research priority area

Place, Environment and Community

The Place, Environment and Community research priority area focuses on architecture, built environment and planning, and geography & environmental studies.

View our research projects

The Place, Environment and Community Research Priority Area comprises around 40 academic researchers across a wide range of disciplines including biology, ecology, geography, sociology with a well-established track record in national and international funded research, strong research impact and policy influence and strong outcomes from the UK national research assessments.

The RPA is broadly organised into two core REF2021 Units of Assessment:

Two students walking in the countryside

Architecture, Built Environment and Planning

This UoA focuses largely on the Countryside and Community Research Institute has 26 research staff and 10 PhD students and aims to undertake innovative, applied and impactful. Funders include the European Union (Horizon 2020 programme), the United Nations (UN), the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), UK national agencies and departments, and third sector bodies.

Much of the CCRI’s research supports the transition to net-zero and addresses the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, with a particular focus on rural areas, food systems and green spaces.

For more information contact Dr Julie Urquhart

Geography & Environmental Studies

This UoA largely comprises 15 academics in the School of Education and Applied Sciences, geography and biosciences teams. Researchers in this unit teach several courses at undergraduate and postgraduate level and supervise postgraduate research for PhD and Masters by Research.

In our research, we work with a wide range of funders both UK and international and collaborate with research in institutions around the world. There are two major scientific research labs: the Luminescence Lab which offers dating work for commercial archaeological clients, as well as international research teams, and the Biomedical Sciences Lab.

For more information contact: Dr Lucy Clarke

South African scenery


Research centres


Contact Kenny Lynch, research priority area convenor for Place, Environment and Community.

We’ll get back to you as soon as we can within office hours